Netflix and YouTube to Reduce Video Quality in Europe so the Internet Doesn't Break

March 23, 2020

The coronavirus pandemic has left millions around the world staying indoors.

To curb the influx of users, Netflix and YouTube will reduce streaming quality in Europe for at least a month, reported CNN. This will prevent the internet from collapsing as many stream movies and TV shows during the COVID-19 outbreak.

Both companies said by doing this, it will affect streaming for 30 days.

"We estimate that this will reduce Netflix traffic on European networks by around 25% while also ensuring a good quality service for our members," a Netflix spokesperson said in a statement.

A spokesperson for Google, who owns YouTube, released a statement. "We will continue working with member state governments and network operators to minimize stress on the system, while also delivering a good user experience," the statement read.

European Commissioner Theirry Breton tweeted that he would speak to Netflix’s boss Reed Hastings. "To secure Internet access for all, let's #SwitchToStandard definition when HD is not necessary," Breton wrote.

CNN reported that Breton said streaming platforms "all have a joint responsibility to take steps to ensure the smooth functioning of the internet during the battle against the virus propagation."

A Netflix spokesperson said reducing the quality may mean some users "see a reduction in perceptible video quality," while others won’t notice anything.

Breton said this action will reduce traffic on Netflix in European networks by around 25%.

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